Rita Angus painted this work soon after the end of the Second World War as a memorial to her sister, Edna, who had died in 1939. Angus painted a number of images of female figures, often self-portraits, and they tend to have considerable symbolic content. In this work a goddess of mercy, surrounded by a halo of branches, holds a yellow crocus, an early sign of spring, while the ploughed fields, the melting snows and the quiet animals promise a peaceful future now that the war is over.
Te whakamahi i tēnei tūemi
Christchurch Art Gallery - Te Puna o Waiwhetu
Oil on canvas by Rita Angus
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Courtesy of the Estate of Rita Angus